James Davies
I am JamesZilla. I write tutorials for various magazines and websites when I'm not designing gig posters, t-shirts, catalogues, magazine, etc.
  • Design & Illustration
    How to Turn Humdrum Photos Into Cinematic PortraitsPreview
    There are a plethora of ways to treat a portrait, for a myriad of uses, but that is for another feature. Let's tackle adding drama or a cinematic quality to a regular, humdrum portrait. Let's even throw in a little bit of faking HDR. That way if you work on a project that requires a stunning shot without the stunning photography, you'll be able to cobble something together using your mad skillz!Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    How to Apply Textures to Uneven SurfacesPreview
    Applying texture to a flat surface, or flatly applying a texture across a whole image (as a means to age it or degrade it) is simple stuff. Realistically applying a texture to an uneven surface is much more hands-on (more so than simply overlaying a texture and changing the Blending mode).Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    Design Your Own Graphic Tee in Photoshop - Part 2Preview
    This tutorial is the second installment of a 2 part series on designing graphic tees in Photoshop. If you have not already checked it out, please take a look at Part 1: An In-Depth Look Into the Graphic Tee. As printing technology and methodology improve, designers are given more freedom to push the canvas - in this case a t-shirt - to its limits. Don’t feel like you have to design in your favourite Vector package, Photoshop is a powerful creative tool that can be used to great effect. In today's tutorial I will demonstrate how you can create a composite t-shirt design from photo assets and basic drawing techniques.Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    An In-Depth Look Into the Graphic Tee - Part 1Preview
    In the past few years, we have seen a real resurgence of the Graphic tee with both fashion labels, and renegade designers offering their art for sale on this ever-popular medium. We’ve also seen the rise of online competition/communities such as Threadless, Design by Humans and La Fraise. These have been made popular not only by the popularization of the graphic tee itself but by the accessibility of the hardware and software required to create them. Today, we would like to discuss the popularization of the graphic tee in some detail; first, with a brief history lesson, then a quick round up of some popular t-shirt designers, and finally with an interview of Dirty Velvet.Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    How to Create a Contemporary Style Illustration Without Drawing SkillsPreview
    There are many ways to illustrate and be creative even if you can't draw so well. If you've got an imagination and some Photoshop skills, then you can create illustrations that are bang on trend. I'll take you through the necessary steps to get you on your way to creating artworks of your own. The aim of this tutorial though, is not to teach you how to rip off the style, but to show you how to create illustrations without needing to outdraw Da Vinvi. The hope is that you'll follow and use these techniques to work within your own style!Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    Manipulate Smoke to Create Hyper-Real ImagesPreview
    Learn to apply the Warp Tool effectively and a few other tricks to make smoke look like a skull. This technique has a variety of outcomes and works well with water, clouds and a whole bunch of other stuff. This is probably more for intermediate users, as I guide you through the process well, but not every Warp Grid point handle move. Let's get started!Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    How to Create a Steampunk Style Illustration in PhotoshopPreview
    Go simultaneously backward and forward in time with this Steampunk tutorial. The main focus, aside from the style of course, is fusing elements from different sources together to create a cohesive whole. There are many tricks to this end and we shall be looking at light sources, shadows, and image grading.Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    How to Create a Retro Boxing Poster in PhotoshopPreview day4
    As it's Graphic Design Week here on Psdtuts+, let's take a look at some basic Graphic Design principles and cast an eye over the Boxing Poster aesthetic from yesteryear. Creating a retrograde look is nothing new, but there are some things to keep an eye out for when mimicking Graphic Design from any decades past. We'll be drawing inspiration from Poster Design from the 1960s, particularly Boxing Posters from that era. Let's get started!Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    Creating a Space-Helmeted Future Retro IllustrationPreview
    I don't know about you guys but I'm loving the work of Electrik Suicide and Sakke Soini at the moment. I'm going to call it Future Retro for the sake of this tutorial. I employed my take on the style in pitching a poster and overall look for a night at a local club. This tutorial goes over the meat and potatoes of it's creation!Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    Splattered Vector and Photography Mash UpPreview
    Mixing Vector work with Photography is a great way to produce a fun and colorful art style. This approach is used in a variety of projects from club flyers and CD Artwork through to high-end advertising imagery. Expanding on the comprehensive guide to the Pen Tool by Ian Yates, we look at creative ways of implanting the tool. This tutorial should convince those of you lacking the confidence to draw within Photoshop to do so with style.Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    Make a Cut and Paste Rock Club FlyerPreview
    There are many ways to montage stuff together and many applications for the style. Whether editorial art, artwork for bands or, as we'll be looking at, a promotional flyer. We'll look at creative use of scanning and montage techniques to create an atmospheric flyer design based on one I did for a Rock night at a club. As with any design it's best to sketch out a rough layout so you know where the text is going. Please note this tutorial covers the creation of the graphics and not the text as well.Read More…
  • Design & Illustration
    Design a High Impact Gig Poster Suitable for Screen-PrintingPreview
    Screen-prints are a great way to exhibit artworks or advertise a gig. Creating a high impact poster suitable for the screen-printing process can be achieved relatively easily. In this instance, we're going for a stylized and coarse effect, rather than a photo-realistic halftone interpretation of a design. So let's create a 3-color design that looks great on screen, printed from your home printer, or screen-printed using the silk-screen printing method.Read More…